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Memories of Ckildhoocl's 
olavery J_)ays 

By 
Annie L. Burton 



•i» 



BOSTON 

ROSS PUBLISHING COMPANY 
1909 




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LIBRARY of CONGRESS 
Two CoDtes Received 

FEB 17 ia09 

Copvrient Entry 
CLASS C_ '^'^C. No. 



RECOLLECTIONS OF A HAPPY LIFE 

The memory of my happy, care-free childhood 
days on the plantation, with my little white and black 
companions, is often with me. Neither master nor 
mistress nor neighbors had time to bestow a thought 
upon us, for the great Civil War was raging. That 
great event in American history was a matter wholly 
outside the realm of our childish interests. Of course 
we heard our elders discuss the various events of the 
great struggle, but it meant nothing to us. 

On the plantation there were ten white children 
and fourteen colored children. Our days were spent 
roaming about from plantation to plantation, not 
knowing or caring what things were going on in the 
great world outside our little realm. Planting time 
and harvest time were happy days for us. How 
often at the harvest time the planters discovered 
cornstalks missing from the ends of the rows, and 
blamed the crows ! We were called the ' ' little fairy 



MEMORIES OF CHILDHOOD'S SLAVERY DAYS 

devils." To the sweet potatoes and peanuts and 
sugar cane we also helped ourselves. 

Those slaves that were not married served the 
food from the great house, and about half-past 
eleven they would send the older children with food 
to the workers in the fields. Of course, I followed, 
and before we got to the fields, we had eaten the 
food nearly all up. When the workers returned home 
they complained, and we were whipped. 

The slaves got their allowance every Monday 
night of molasses, meat, corn meal, and a kind of 
flour called - dredgings "or - shorts." Perhaps 
this allowance would be gone before the next Mon- 
day night, in which case the slaves would steal hogs 
and chickens. Then would come the whipping-post. 
Master himself never whipped his slaves; this was 
left to the overseer. 

We children had no supper, and only a little piece 
of bread or something of the kind in the morning. 
Our dishes consisted of one wooden bowl, and oyster 
shells were our spoons. This bowl served for about 
fifteen children, and often the dogs and the ducks 
and the peafowl had a dip in it. Sometimes we had 
buttermilk and bread in our bowl, sometimes greens 

or bones. 

Our clothes were little homespun cotton slips, 



MEMORIES OF CHILDHOOD'S SLAVERY DAYS 

with short sleeves. I never knew what shoes were 
until I got big enough to earn them myself. 

If a slave man and woman wished to marry, a 
party would be arranged some Saturday night among 
the slaves. The marriage ceremony consisted of the 
pair jumping over a stick. If no children were born 
within a year or so, the wife was sold. 
• At New Year's, if there was any debt or mortgage 
on the plantation, the extra slaves were taken to 
Clayton and sold at the court house. In this way 
families were separated. 

When they were getting recruits for the war, we 
were allowed to go to Clayton to see the soldiers. 

I remember, at the beginning of the war, two col- 
ored men were hung in Clayton; one, Caesar King, 
for killing a blood hound and biting off an overseer's 
ear; the other, Dabney Madison, for the murder of 
his master. Dabney Madison's master was really 
shot by a man named Houston, who was infatuated 
with Madison's mistress, and who had hired Madi- 
son to make the bullets for him. Houston escaped 
after the deed, and the blame fell on Dabney Mad- 
ison, as he was the only slave of his master and 
mistress. The clothes of the two victims were hung 
on two pine trees, and no colored person would touch 
them. Since I have grown up, I have seen the 



ME MORIES OF CHILDHOOD'S SLAVERY DAYS 

skeleton of one of these men in the office of a doctor 
in Clayton. 

After the men were hung, the bones were put in 
an old deserted house. Somebody that cared for 
the bones used to put them in the sun in bright 
weather, and back in the house when it rained. Fi- 
nally the bones disappeared, although the boxes that 
had contained them still remained. 

At one time, when they were building barns on 
the plantation, one of the big boys got a little brandy 
and gave us children all a drink, enough to make us 
drunk. Four doctors were sent for, but nobody could 
tell what was the matter with us, except they thought 
' we had eaten something poisonous. They wanted 
to give us some castor oil, but we refused to take it, 
because we thought that the oil was made from the 
bones of the dead men we had seen. Finally, we 
told about the big white boy giving us the brandy, 
and the mystery was cleared up. 

Young as I was then, I remember this conversation 
between master and mistress, on master's return 
from the gate one day, when he had received the lat- 
est news: '' William, what is the news from the seat 
of war? " ''A great battle was fought at Bull Run, 
and the Confederates won," he replied. '' Oh, good, 
good," said mistress, '' and what did Jeff Davis 



MEMORIES OF CHILDHOOD'S SLAVERY DAYS 

say? " ^' Look out for the blockade. I do not know 
what the end may be soon," he answered. '' What 
does Jeff Davis mean by that? " she asked. " Sarah 
Anne, I don 't know, unless he means that the niggers 
will be free." '' 0, my God, what shall we do? " 
'' I presume," he said, " we shall have to put our 
boys to work and hire help." '' But," she said, 
" what will the niggers do if they are free? Why, 
they will starve if we don't keep them." " Oh, 
well," he said, " let them wander, if they will not 
stay with their owners. I don't doubt that many 
owners have been good to their slaves, and they 
would rather remain with their owners than wander 
about without home or country." 

My mistress often told me that my father was a 
planter who owned a plantation about two miles 
from ours. He was a white man, bom in Liverpool, 
England. He died in Lewisville, Alabama, in the 
year 1875. 

I will venture to say that I only saw my father a 
dozen times, when I was about four years old; and 
those times I saw him only from a distance, as he 
was driving by the great house of our plantation. 
Whenever my mistress saw him going by, she would 
take me by the hand and run out upon the piazza, 
and exclaim, "■ Stop there, I say! Don't you want 



MEMORIES OF CHILDHOOD'S SLAVERY DAYS 

to see and speak to and caress your darling child! 
She often speaks of you and wants to embrace her 
dear father. See what a bright and beautiful daugh- 
ter she is, a perfect picture of yourself. Well, I 
declare, you are an affectionate father." I well 
remember that whenever my mistress would speak 
thus and upbraid him, he would whip up his horse 
and get out of sight and hearing as quickly as pos- 
sible. My mistress's action was, of course, intended 
to humble and shame my father. I never spoke to 
him, and cannot remember that he ever noticed me, 
or in any way acknowledged me to be his child. 

My mother and my mistress were children to- 
gether, and grew up to be mothers together. My 
mother was the cook in my mistress's household. 
One morning when master had gone to Eufaula, my 
mother and my mistress got into an argument, the 
consequence of which was that my mother was 
whipped, for the first time in her life. Whereupon, 
my mother refused to do any more work, and ran 
away from the plantation. For three years we did 
not see her again. 

Our plantation was one of several thousand acres, 
comprising large level fields, upland, and consider- 
able forests of Southern pine. Cotton, corn, sweet 
potatoes, sugar cane, wheat, and rye were the prin-. 



MEMORIES OF CHILDHOOD'S SLAVERY DAYS 

cipal crops raised on the plantation. It was situated 

near the P River, and about twenty-three miles 

from Clayton, Ala. 

One day my master heard that the Yankees were 
coming our way, and he immediately made prepara- 
tions to get his goods and valuables out of their 
reach. The big six-mule team was brought to the 
smoke-house door, and loaded with hams and pro- 
visions. After being loaded, the team was put in 
the care of two of the most trustworthy and valuable 
slaves that my master owned, and driven away. It 
was master's intention to have these things taken 
to a swamp, and there concealed in a pit that had 
recently been made for the purpose. But just before 
the team left the main road for the by-road that led 
to the swamp, the two slaves were surprised by the 
Yankees, who at once took possession of the provi- 
sions, and started the team toward Clayton, where 
the Yankees had headquarters. The road to Clayton 
ran past our plantation. One of the slave children 
happened to look up the road, and saw the Yankees 
coming, and gave warning. T^Hiereupon, my master 
left unceremoniously for the woods, and remained 
concealed there for five days. The niggers had run 
away whenever they got a chance, but now it was 
master's and the other white folks' turn to run. 



MEMORIES OF CHILDHOOP-S SLAVERY DAYS 

The Yankees rode up to the piazza of the great 
house and inquired who owned the plantation. They 
gave orders that nothing must be touched or taken 
away, as they intended to return shortly and take 
possession. My mistress and the slaves watched 
for their return day and night for more than a week, 
but the Yankees did not come back. 

One morning in April, 1865, my master got the 
news that the Yankees had left Mobile Bay and 
crossed the Confederate lines, and that the Emanci- 
pation Proclamation had been signed by President 
Lincoln. Mistress suggested that the slaves should 
not be told of their freedom; but master said he 
would tell them, because they would soon find it out, 
even if he did not tell them. Mistress, however, said 
she could keep my mother's three children, for my 
mother had now been gone so long. 

All the slaves left the plantation upon the news 
of their freedom, except those who were feeble or 
sickly. Witli the help of these, the crops were gath- 
ered. My mistress and her daughters had to go to 
the kitchen and to the washtub. My little half- 
brother, Henry, and myself had to gather chips, and 
help all we could. My sister, Caroline, who was 
twelve years old, could help in the kitchen. 

After the war, the Yankees took all the good mules 

10 



MEMOKIES OF CHILDHOOD'S SLAVERY DAYS 

and horses from the plantation, and left their old 
army stock. We children chanced to come across 
one of the Yankees' old horses, that had " U. S." 
branded on him. We called him " Old Yank " and 
got him fattened up. One day in August, six of us 
children took " Old Yank " and went away back on 
the plantation for watermelons. Coming home, we 
thought we would make the old horse trot. When 
'' Old Yank " commenced to trot, our big melons 
dropped off, but we couldn 't stop the horse for some 
time. Finally, one of the big boys went back and got 
some more melons, and left us eating what we could 
find of the ones that had been dropped. Then all we 
six, with our melons, got on " Old Yank " and went 
home. We also used to hitch " Old Yank " into a 
wagon and get wood. But one sad day in the fall, 
the Yankees came back again, and gathered up their 
old stock, and took * ' Old Yank ' ' away. 

One day mistress sent me out to do some churning 
under a tree. I went to sleep and jerked the churn 
over on top of me, and consequently got a whip- 
ping. 

My mother came for us at the end of the year 
1865, and demanded that her children be given up 
to her. This, mistress refused to do, and threatened 
to set the dogs on my mother if she did not at once 

11 



MEMORIES OF CHILDHOOD'S SLAVEEY DAYS 

leave the place. My mother went away, and re- 
mained with some of the neighbors until supper 
time. Then she got a boy to tell Caroline to come 
down to the fence. When she came, my mother told 
her to go back and get Henry and myself and bring 
us down to the gap in the fence as quick as she could. 
Then my mother took Henry in her arms, and my 
sister carried me on her back. We climbed fences 
and crossed fields, and after several hours came to a 
little hut which my mother had secured on a planta- 
tion. We had no more than reached the place, and 
made a little fire, when master's two sons rode up 
and demanded that the children be returned. My 
mother refused to give us up. Upon her offering to 
go with them to the Yankee headquarters to find out 
if it were really true that all negroes had been made 
free, the young men left, and troubled us no more. 

The cabin that was now our home was made of 
logs. It had one door, and an opening in one wall, 
with an inside shutter, was the only window. The 
door was fastened with a latch. Our beds were some 
straw. 

There were six in our little family; my mother, 
Caroline, Henry, two other children that my mother 
had brought with her upon her return, and myself. 

The man on whose plantation this cabin stood, 

12 



MEMOEIES OF THE DAWN OF FEEEDOM 

hired my mother as cook, and gave us this little home. 
We children used to sell blueberries and plums that 
we picked. One day the man on whom we depended 
for our home and support, left. Then my mother 
did washing by the day, for whatever she could get. 
We were sent to get cold victuals from hotels and 
such places. A man wanting hands to pick cotton, 
my brother Henry and I were set to help in this 
work. We had to go to the cotton field very early 
every morning. For this work, we received forty 
cents for every hundred pounds of cotton we picked. 

Caroline was hired out to take care of a baby. 

In 1866, another man hired the plantation on which 
our hut stood, and we moved into Clayton, to a little 
house my mother secured there. A rich lady came 
to our house one day, looking for some one to take 
care of her little daughter. I was taken, and adopted 
into this family. This rich lady was Mrs. E. M. Wil- 
liams, a music teacher, the wife of a lawyer. We 
called her " Mis' Mary." 

Some rich people in Clayton who had owned slaves, 
opened the Methodist church on Sundays, and began 
the work of teaching the negroes. My new mistress 
sent me to Sunday school every Sunday morning, 
and I soon got so that I could read. Mis' Mary 
taught me every day at her knee. I soon could read 

13 



MEMORIES OF THE DAW^^ OF FREEDOM 

nicely, and went through Sterling's Second Reader, 
and then into McGuthrie's Third Reader. The first 
piece of poetry I recited in Sunday school was taught 
to me by Mis' Mary during the week. Mis' Mary's 
father-in-law, an ex-judge, of Clayton, Alabama, 
heard me recite it, and thought it was wonderful. It 
was this: 

" I am glad to see you, little bird, 
It was your sweet song I heard. 
What was it I heard you say? 
Give me crumbs to eat today? 
Here are crumbs I brought for you. 
Eat your dinner, eat away, 
Come and see us every day." 

After this Mis ' Mary kept on with my studies, and 
taught me to write. As I grew older, she taught me 
to cook and how to do housework. During this time 
Mis ' Mary had given my mother one dollar a month 
in return for my services ; now as I grew up to young 
womanhood, I thought I would like a little money of 
my own. Accordingly, Mis' Mary began to pay me 
four dollars a month, besides giving me my board 
and clothes. For two summers she '* let me out " 
while she was away, and I got five dollars a month. 

Wliile I was with Mis ' Mary, I had my first sweet- 
heart, one of the young fellows who attended Sunday 

14 



MEMOEIES OF THE DAWN OF FREEDOM 

school with me. Mis' Mary, however, objected to the 
young man's coming to the house to call, because she 
did not think I was old enough to have a sweetheart. 

I owe a great deal to Mis ' Mary for her good train- 
ing of me, in honesty, uprightness and truthfulness. 
She told me that when I went out into the world all 
white folks would not treat me as she had, but that I 
must not feel bad about it, but just do what I was 
employed to do, and if I wasn't satisfied, to go else- 
where ; but always to carry an honest name. 

One Sunday when my sweetheart walked to the 
gate with me. Mis' Mary met him and told him she 
thought I was too young for him, and that she was 
sending me to Sunday school to learn, not to catch 
a beau. It was a long while before he could see me 
again, — not until later in the season, in watermelon 
time, when Mis ' Mary and my mother gave me per- 
mission to go to a watermelon party one Sunday 
afternoon. Mis' Mary did not know, however, that 
my sweetheart had planned to escort me. We met 
around the corner of the house, and after the party 
he left me at the same place. After that I saw him 
occasionally at barbecues and parties. I was per- 
mitted to go with him some evenings to church, but 
my mother always walked ahead or behind me and 
the young man. 

15 



MEMORIES OF THE DAWN OF FREEDOM 

We went together for four years. During that 
time, although I still called Mis' Mary's my home, I 
had been out to service in one or two families. 

Finally, my mother and Mis' Mary consented to 
our marriage, and the wedding day was to be in May. 
The winter before that May, I went to service in the 
family of Dr. Drury in Eufaula. Just a week before 
I left Clayton I dreamed that my sweetheart died 
suddenly. The night before I was to leave, we were 
invited out to tea. He told me he had bought a nice 
piece of poplar wood, with which to make a table for 
our new home. When I told him my dream, he said, 
" Don't let that trouble you, there is nothing in 
dreams." But one month from that day he died, 
and his cofiSn was made from the piece of poplar 
wood he had bought for the table. 

After his death, I remained in Clayton for two or 
three weeks with my people, and then went back to 
Eufaula, where I stayed two years. 

My sweetheart's death made a profound impres- 
sion on me, and I began to pray as best I could. 
Often I remained all night on my knees. 

Going on an excursion to Macon, Georgia, one 
time, I liked the place so well that I did not go back 
to Eufaula. I got a place as cook in the family of 
an Episcopal clergyman, and remained with them 

16 



MEMOEIES OF THE DAWN OF FEEEDOM 

eight years, leaving when the family moved to New 
Orleans. 

During these eight years, my mother died in Clay- 
ton, and I had to take the three smallest children 
into my care. My oldest sister was now married, 
and had a son. 

I now went to live with a Mrs. Maria Campbell, a 
colored woman, who adopted me and gave me her 
name. Mrs, Campbell did washing and ironing for 
her living. While living with her, I went six months 
to Lewis' High School in Macon. Then I went to 
Atlanta, and obtained a place as first-class cook with 
Mr. E. N. Inman. But I always considered Mrs. 
Campbell 's my home. I remained about a year with 
Mr. Inman, and received as wages ten dollars a 
month. 

One day, when the family were visiting in Mem- 
phis, I chanced to pick up a newspaper, and read the 
advertisement of a Northern family for a cook to go 
to Boston. I went at once to the address given, and 
made agreement to take the place, but told the people 
that I could not leave my present position until Mr. 
Inman returned home. Mr. and Mrs. Inman did 
not want to let me go, but I made up my mind to go 
North. The Northern family whose service I was 
to enter had returned to Boston before I left, and 

17 



MEMORIES OF LIFE 11^ THE NORTH 

had made arrangements with a friend, Mr. Bnllock, 
to see me safely started North. 

After deciding to go North, I went to Macon, to 
make arrangements with Mrs. Campbell for the care 
of my two sisters who lived with her. One sister 
was now about thirteen and the other fifteen, both 
old enough to do a little for themselves. My brother 
was dead. He went to Brunswick in 1875, and died 
there of the yellow fever in 1876. One sister I 
brought in later years to Boston. I stayed in Macon 
two weeks, and was in Atlanta three or four days 
before leaving for the North. 

About the 15th of June, 1879, I arrived at the Old 
Colony Station in Boston, and had my first glimpse 
of the country I had heard so much about. From 
Boston I went to Newtonville, where I was to work. 
The gentleman whose service I was to enter, Mr. E. 
N. Kimball, was waiting at the station for me, and 
drove me to his home on Warner Street. For a few 
days, until I got somewhat adjusted to my new cir- 
cumstances, I had no work to do. On June 17th the 
family took me with them to Auburndale. But in 
spite of the kindness of Mrs. Kimball and the colored 
nurse, I grew very homesick for the South, and would 
often look in the direction of my old home and cry. 

The washing, a kind of work I knew nothing about, 

18 



MEMORIES OE LIEE IN THE NORTH 

was given to me; but I could not do it, and it was 
finally given over to a hired woman. I had to do the 
ironing of the fancy clothing for Mrs. Kimball and 
the children. 

About five or six weeks after my arrival, Mrs. 
Kimball and the children went to the White Moun- 
tains for the summer, and I had more leisure. Mr. 
Kimball went up to the mountains every Saturday 
night, to stay with his family over Sunday; but he 
and his father-in-law were at home other nights, and 
I had to have dinner for them. 

To keep away the homesickness and loneliness as 
much as possible, I made acquaintance with the hired 
girl across the street. 

One morning I climbed up into the cherry tree that 
grew between Mr. Kimball 's yard and the yard of his 
next-door neighbor, Mr, Roberts. I was thinking of 
the South, and as I picked the cherries, I sang a 
Southern song. Mr. Roberts heard me, and gave me 
a dollar for the song. 

By agreement, Mrs. Kimball was to give me three 
dollars and a half a week, instead of four, until the 
difference amounted to my fare from the South; 
after that, I was to have four dollars. I had, how- 
ever, received but little money. In the fall, after the 
family came home, we had a little difficulty about my 

19 



MEMOEIES OF LIFE 1^ THE XORTH 

wages, and I left and came into Boston. One of my 
Macon acquaintances had come North before me, 
and now had a position as cook in a house on Colum- 
bus Avenue. I looked this girl up. Then I went to 
a lodging-house for colored people on Kendall 
Street, and spent one night there. Mrs. Kimball had 
refused to give me a recommendation, because she 
wanted me to stay with her, and thought the lack of 
a recommendation would be an inducement. In the 
lodging-house I made acquaintance with a colored 
girl, who took me to an intelligence office. The man 
at the desk said he would give me a card to take to 
24 Springfield Street, on receipt of fifty cents. I had 
never heard of an office of this kind, and asked a 
good many questions. After being assured that my 
money would be returned in case I did not accept 
the situation, I paid the fifty cents and started to find 
the address on the card. Being ignorant of the 
scheme of street numbering, I inquired of a woman 
whom I met, where No. 24 was. This woman asked 
me if I was looking for work, and when I told her I 
was, she said a friend of hers on Springfield Street 
wanted a servant immediately. Of course I went 
with this lady, and after a conference with the 
mistress of the house as to my ability, when I 
could begin work, what wages I should want, etc., 

20 



MEMORIES OF LIFE IN THE NORTH 

I was engaged as cook at three dollars and a half 
a week. 

From this place I proceeded to 24 Springfield 
Street, as directed, hoping that I would be refused, 
so that I might go back to the intelligence office and 
get my fifty cents. The lady at No. 24 who wanted 
a servant, said she didn't think I was large and 
strong enough, and guessed I wouldn't do. Then I 
went and got my fifty cents. 

Having now obtained a situation, I sent to Mr. 
Kimball's for my trunk. I remained in my new 
place a year and a half. At the end of that time the 
family moved to Dorchester, and because I did not 
care to go out there, I left their service. 

From this place, I went to Narragansett Pier to 
work as a chambermaid for the summer. In the fall, 
I came back to Boston and obtained a situation with 
a family, in Berwick Park. This family afterward 
moved to Jamaica Plain, and I went with them. 
With this family I remained seven years. They were 
very kind to me, gave me two or three weeks' vaca- 
tion, without loss of pay. 

In June, 1884, I went with them to their summer 
home in the Isles of Shoals, as housekeeper for some 
guests who were coming from Paris. On the 6th of 
July I received word that my sister Caroline had 

21 



/ 



MEMOEIES OF LIFE IN THE liORTH 

died in June. This was a great blow to me. I re- 
mained with the Reeds until they closed their sum- 
mer home, but I was not able to do much work after 
the news of my sister's death. 

I wrote home to Georgia, to the white people who 
owned the house in which Caroline had lived, asking 
them to take care of her boy Lawrence until I should 
come in October. When we came back to Jamaica 
Plain in the fall, I was asked to decide what I should 
do in regard to this boy. Mrs. Reed wanted me to 
stay with her, and promised to help pay for the care 
of the boy in Georgia. Of course, she said, I could 
not expect to find positions if I had a child with me. 
As an inducement to remain in my present place 
and leave the boy in Georgia, I was promised provi- 
sion for my future days, as long as I should live. It 
did not take me long to decide what I should do. The 
last time I had seen my sister, a little over a year 
before she died, she had said, when I was leaving, 
'' I don't expect ever to see you again, but if I die 
I shall rest peacefully in my grave, because I know 
you will take care of my child." 

I left Jamaica Plain and took a room on Village 
Street for the two or three weeks until my departure 
for the South. During this time, a lady came to the 
house to hire a girl for her home in Wellesley Hills. 

22 



MEMOKIES or LIFE 11^ THE NORTH 

The girl who was offered the place would not go. I 
volunteered to accept the position temporarily, and 
went at once to the beautiful farm. At the end of a 
week, a man and his wife had been engaged, and I 
was to leave the day after their arrival. These new 
servants, however, spoke very little English, and I 
had to stay through the next week until the new ones 
were broken in. After leaving there I started for 
Georgia, reaching there at the end of five days, at 
five o'clock. 

I took a carriage and drove at once to the house 
where Lawrence was being taken care of. He was 
playing in the yard, and when he saw me leave the 
carriage he ran and threw his arms around my neck 
and cried for joy. I stayed a week in this house, 
looking after such things of my sister's as had not 
been already stored. One day I had a headache, and 
was lying down in the cook's room. Lawrence was 
in the dining-room with the cook's little girl, and the 
two got into a quarrel, in the course of which my 
nephew struck the cook's child. The cook, in her 
anger, chased the boy with a broom, and threatened 
to give him a good whipping at all costs. Hearing 
the noise, I came out into the yard, and when Law- 
rence saw me he ran to me for protection. I inter- 
ceded for him, and promised he should get into no 

23 



MEMORIES OF LIFE K^ THE Is^ORTH 

more trouble. We went at once to a neighbor 's house 
for the night. The next day I got a room in the yard 
of a house belonging to some white people. Here we 
stayed two weeks. The only return I was asked to 
make for the room was to weed the garden. Law- 
rence and I dug out some weeds and burned them, 
but came so near setting fire to the place that we 
were told we need not dig any more weeds, but that 
we might have the use of the room so long as we 
cared to stay. 

In about a week and a half more we got together 
such things as we wanted to keep and take away 
with us. 

The last time I saw my sister, I had persuaded her 
to open a bank account, and she had done so, and 
had made small deposits from time to time. When 
I came to look for the bankbook, I discovered that 
her lodger, one Mayfield, had taken it at her death, 
and nobody knew where it might be now. I found 
out that Mayfield had drawn thirty dollars from the 
account for my sister's burial, and also an unknown 
amount for himself. He had done nothing for the 
boy. I went down to the bank, and was told that 
Mayfield claimed to look after my sister's burial 
and her affairs. He had made one Reuben Bennett, 
who was no relation and had no interest in the mat- 

24 



MEMORIES OF LIFE I^ THE NORTH 

ter, administrator for Lawrence, until his coming 
of age. But Bennett had as yet done nothing for 
him. The book was in the bank, with some of the 
account still undrawn, how much I did not know, I 
next went to see a lawyer, to find out how much it 
would cost me to get this book. The lawyer said 
fifteen dollars. I said I would call again. In the 
meantime, I went to the court house, and when the 
case on trial was adjourned I went to the judge and 
stated my case. The judge, who was slightly ac- 
quainted with my sister and me, told me to have 
Reuben Bennett in court next morning at nine 
o'clock, and to bring Lawrence with me. When we 
had all assembled before the judge, he told Bennett 
to take Lawrence and go to the bank and get the 
money belonging to my sister. Bennett went and col- 
lected the money, some thirty-five dollars. The boy 
was then given into my care by the judge. For his 
kindness, the judge would accept no return. Happy 
at having obtained the money so easily, we went back 
to our room, and rested until our departure the next 
night for Jacksonville, Florida. I had decided to go 
to this place for the winter, on account of Lawrence, 
thinking the Northern winter would be too severe 
for him. 

My youngest sister, who had come to Macon from 

25 



MEMORIES OF LIFE IN^ THE I^TORTH 

Atlanta a few days before my arrival, did not hear 
of Caroline's death until within a few days of our 
departure. This youngest sister decided to go to 
Florida with us for the winter. 

Our trunks and baggage were taken to the station 
in a team. We had a goodly supply of food, given 
us by our friends and by the people whose hospitality 
we had shared during the latter part of our stay. 

The next morning we got into Jacksonville. My 
idea was to get a place as chambermaid at Green 
Cove Springs, Florida, through the influence of the 
head waiter at a hotel there, whom I knew. After I 
got into Jacksonville I changed my plans. I did not 
see how I could move my things any farther, and we 
went to a hotel for colored people, hired a room for 
two dollars, and boarded ourselves on the food which 
had been given us in Macon. This food lasted 
about two weeks. Then I had to buy, and my money 
was going every day, and none coming in. I did not 
know what to do. One night the idea of keeping a 
restaurant came to me, and I decided to get a little 
home for the three of us, and then see what I could 
do in this line of business. After a long and hard 
search, I found a little house of two rooms where we 
could live, and the next day I found a place to start 
my restaurant. For house furnishings, we used at 

26 



MEMOKIES OF LIFE IN THE J^QRTH 

first, to the best advantage we could, the things we 
had brought from Macon. Caroline's cookstove had 
been left with my foster-mother in Macon. After 
hiring the room for the restaurant, I sent for this 
stove, and it arrived in a few days. Then I went to 
a dealer in second-hand furniture and got such things 
as were actually needed for the house and the restau- 
rant, on the condition that he would take them back 
at a discount when I got through with them. 

Trade at the restaurant was very good, and we 
got along nicely. My sister got a position as nurse 
for fifteen dollars a month. One day the cook from 
a shipwrecked vessel came to my restaurant, and in 
return for his board and a bed in the place, agreed 
to do my cooking. After trade became good, I 
changed my residence to a house of four rooms, and 
put three cheap cots in each of two of the rooms, and 
let the cots at a dollar a week apiece to colored men 
who worked nearby in hotels. Lawrence and I did 
the chamber work at night, after the day's work in 
the restaurant. 

I introduced " Boston baked beans " into my res- 
taurant, much to the amusement of the people at 
first ; but after they had once eaten them it was hard 
to meet the demand for beans. 

Lawrence, who was now about eleven years old, 

27 



MEMORIES OF LIFE IX THE ^ORTH 

was a great help to me. He took out dinners to the 
cigarmakers in a factory nearby. 

At the end of the season, about four months, it 
had grown so hot that we could stay in Jacksonville 
no longer. From my restaurant and my lodgers I 
cleared one hundred and seventy-five dollars, which 
I put into the Jacksonville bank. Then I took the fur- 
niture back to the dealer, who fulfilled his agreement. 

My sister decided to go back to Atlanta when she 
got through with her place as nurse, which would 
not be for some weeks. 

I took seventy-five dollars out of my bank account, 
and with Lawrence went to Fernandina. There we 
took train to Port Royal, S. C, then steamer to New 
York. From New York we went to Brooklyn for a 
few days. Then we went to Newport and stayed with 
a woman who kept a lodging-house. I decided to see 
what I could do in Newport by keeping a boarding 
and lodging-house. I hired a little house and agreed 
to pay nine dollars a month for it. I left Lawrence 
with some neighbors while I came to Boston and took 
some things out of storage. These things I moved 
into the little house. But I found, after paying one 
month's rent, that the house was not properly located 
for the business I wanted. I left, and with Lawrence 
went to Narragansett Pier. I got a place there as 

28 



MEMOEIES OF LIFE IIST THE I^ORTH 

' ' runner ' ' for a laundry ; that is, I was to go to the 
hotels and leave cards and solicit trade. Then Law- 
rence thought he would like to help by doing a little 
work. One night when I came back from the laun- 
dry, I missed him. Nobody had seen him. All night 
I searched for him, but did not find him. In the early 
morning I met him coming home. He said a man 
who kept a bowling alley had hired him at fifty cents 
a week to set up the pins, and it was in the bowling 
alley he had been all night. He said the man let him 
take a nap on his coat when he got sleepy. I went 
at once to see this man, and told him not to hire my 
nephew again. A lady who kept a hotel offered me 
two dollars a week for Lawrence's services in help- 
ing the cook and serving in the help's dining-room. 
When the season closed, the lady who hired Law- 
rence was very reluctant to let him go. 

We went back to Newport to see the landlady 
from whom I had hired the house, and I paid such 
part of the rent as I could. Then I packed my things 
and started for Boston. On reaching there, I kept 
such of my things as I needed, and stored the rest, 
and took a furnished room. In about a week's time 
I went to see the husband of the lady for whom I had 
worked at Wellesley Hills just previous to my depar- 
ture for the South. He had told me to let him know 

29 



MEMOEIES OF LIFE m THE ^ORTH 

when I returned to Boston. He said a man and his 
wife were at present employed at his farm, but he 
didn't know how long they would stay. Before an- 
other week had passed, this gentleman sent for me. 
He said his wife wanted me to go out to the farm, 
and that I could have Lawrence with me. The boy, 
he said, could help his wife with the poultry, and 
could have a chance to go to school. I was promised 
three dollars and a half a week, and no washing to 
do. I was told that the farm had been offered for 
sale, and of course it might change hands any day. 
I was promised, however, that I should lose nothing 
by the change. 

Lawrence was very lonely at the farm, with no 
companions, and used to sit and cry. 

The place was sold about ten weeks after I went 
there, and I came into Boston to look about for a 
restaurant, leaving Lawrence at the farm. When 
the home was broken up, the owners came to the 
Revere House, Boston. Barrels of apples, potatoes 
and other provisions were given to me. 

I found a little restaurant near the Providence 
depot for sale. I made arrangements at once to 
buy the place for thirty-five dollars, and the next 
day I brought Lawrence and my things from Welles- 
ley Hills. I paid two dollars a week rent for my little 

30 



MEMORIES OF LIFE 11^ THE JS^OETH 

restaurant, and did very well. The next spring I 
sold the place for fifty dollars, in time to get a place 
at the beach for the summer. 

Lawrence got a position in a drug store, and kept 
it four years. Then he went to Hampton College, 
Hampton, Va. After finishing there, he came back 
and then went to the World's Fair in Chicago. After 
that he took a position on one of the Fall River 
line boats. At the outbreak of the Spanish War, 
he enlisted in Brooklyn as powderman on the bat- 
tleship Texas. He was on the Texas when the first 
shot was fired. He was present at the decoration 
of the graves of the American soldiers in Havana, 
and also at the decoration of the battleship Maine 
after she was raised. After the war, he came to 
Brooklyn and got an honorable discharge. Then 
he served as valet to a rich New York man, who 
travelled a good deal. About the middle of last 
November (1906) Lawrence came to Boston to see 
me. He is now in Atlantic City, a waiter in the 
Royal Hotel. 

In 1888, I was married, at 27 Pemberton Street, 
to Samuel H. Burton, by Dr. 0. P. Gifford. After 
my marriage, Mr. Burton got a place in Braintree 
as valet to an old gentleman who was slightly de- 
mented, and he could not be satisfied until I joined 

31 



MEMORIES OE LIFE IN THE NORTH 

him. So I put our things into storage and went to 
Braintree. I remained there ten months, and then 
came back to Boston. Then I got a position as head 
matron in the help 's dining-room in a hotel at "Watch 
Hill, R. I. My husband was also there as waiter. At 
the end of the season we both came home, and rented 
a lodging-house, and lost money on it. 




32 



REMINISCENCES 



c 



^ ^ REMINISCENCES ^ ^ 

The times changed from slavery days to freedom's 
days. As young as I was, my thoughts were mystir 
fied to see such wonderful changes; yet I did not 
know the meaning of these changing days. But days 
glided by, and in my mystified way I could see and 
hear many strange things. I would see my master 
and mistress in close conversation and they seemed 
anxious about something that I, a child, could not 
know the meaning of. 

But as weeks went by, I began to understand. I 
saw all the slaves one by one disappearing from the 
plantation (for night and day they kept going) until 
there was not one to be seen. 

All around the plantation was left barren. Day 
after day I could run down to the gate and see down 
the road troops and troops of Garrison's Brigade, 
and in the midst of them gangs and gangs of negro 
slaves who joined with the soldiers, shouting, danc- 
ing and clapping their hands. The war was ended, 
and from Mobile Bay to Clayton, Ala., all along the 

35 



KEMINISCENCES 



road, on all the plantations, the slaves thought that 
if they joined the Yankee soldiers they would be per- 
fectly safe. 

As I looked on these I did not know what it meant, 
for I had never seen such a circus. The Yankee sol- 
diers found that they had such an army of men and 
women and children, that they had to build tents and 
feed them to keep them from starving. But from 
what I, a little child, saw and heard the older ones 
say, that must have been a terrible time of trouble. 
I heard my master and mistress talking. They said, 
' ' Well, I guess those Yankees had such a large fam- 
ily on their hands, we rather guessed those fanatics 
on freedom would be only too glad to send some back 
for their old masters to provide for them." 

But they never came back to our plantation, and 
I could only speak of my own home, but I thought 
to myself, what would become of my good times all 
over the old plantation. Oh, the harvesting times, 
the great hog-killing times when several hundred 
hogs were killed, and we children watched and got 
our share of the slaughter in pig's liver roasted on 
a bed of coals, eaten ashes and all. Then came the 
great sugar-cane grinding time, when they were 
making the molasses, and we children would be hang- 
ing round, drinking the sugar-cane juice, and await- 

36 



KEMINISCENCES 



ing the moment to help ourselves to everything good. 
We did, too, making ourselves sticky and dirty with 
the sweet stuff being made. Not only were the slave 
children there, but the little white children from 
Massa's house would join us and have a jolly time. 
The negro child and the white child knew not the 
great chasm between their lives, only that they had 
dainties and we had crusts. 

My sister, being the children's nurse, would take 
them and wash their hands and put them to bed in 
their luxurious bedrooms, while we little slaves would 
find what homes we could. My brother and I would 
go to sleep on some lumber under the house, where 
our sister Caroline would find us and put us to bed. 
She would wipe our hands and faces and make up 
our beds on the floor in Massa's house, for we had 
lived with him ever since our own mother had run 
away, after being whipped by her mistress. Later 
on, after the war, my mother returned and claimed 
us. I never knew my father, who was a white man. 

During these changing times, just after the war, I 
was trying to find out what the change would bring 
about for us, as we were under the care of our mis- 
tress, living in the great house. I thought this : that 
Henry, Caroline and myself, Louise, would have to 
go as others had done, and where should we go and 

37 



EEMINISCE^CES 



what should we do ? But as time went on there were 
many changes. Our mistress and her two daugh- 
ters, Martha and Mary, had to become their own ser- 
vants, and do all the work of the house, going into 
the kitchen, cooking and washing, and feeling very 
angry that all their house servants had run away to 
the Yankees. The time had come when our good 
times were over, our many leisure hours spent among 
the cotton fields and woods and our half -holiday on 
Saturday. These were all gone. The boys had to 
leave school and take the runaway slaves' places to 
finish the planting and pick the cotton. I myself 
have worked in the cotton field, picking great baskets 
full, too heavy for me to carry. All was over! I 
now fully understood the change in our circum- 
stances. Little Henry and I had no more time to sit 
basking ourselves in the sunshine of the sunny south. 
The land was empty and the servants all gone. I 
can see my dainty mistress coming down the steps 
saying, '^ Rit, you and Henry will have to go and 
pick up some chips, for Miss Mary and myself have 
to prepare the breakfast. You children will have 
to learn to work. Do you undef stand me, Rit and 
Henry? " " Yes, Missus, we understand." And 
away we flew, laughing, and thinking it a great joke 
that we, Massa's pets, must learn to work. 

38 



REMINISCENCES 



But it was a sad, sad change on the old plantation, 
and the beautiful, proud Sunny South, with its mas- 
ters and mistresses, was bowed beneath the sin 
brought about by slavery. It was a terrible blow to 
the owners of plantations and slaves, and their child- 
ren would feel it more than they, for they had been 
reared to be waited upon by willing or unwilling 
slaves. 

In this place I will insert a poem my young mis- 
tress taught us, for she was always reading poems 
and good stories. But first I will record a talk I 
heard between my master and mistress. They were 
sitting in the dining-room, and we children were 
standing around the table. My mistress said, " I 
suppose, as Nancy has never returned, we had better 
keep Henry, Caroline and Louise until they are of 
age." '^ Yes, we will," said Massa, Miss Mary 
and Miss Martha, ' ' but it is ' man proposes and God 
disposes.' " 

So in the following pages you will read the sequel 
to my childhood life in the Sunny South. 

Right after the war when my mother had got set- 
tled in her hut, with her little brood hovered around 
her, from which she had been so long absent, we had 
nothing to eat, and nothing to sleep on save some 
old pieces of horse-blankets and hay that the soldiers 

39 



REMINISCEIsrCES 



gave her. The first day in the hut was a rainy day ; 
and as night drew near it grew more fierce, and we 
children had gathered some little fagots to make a 
fire by the time mother came home, with something 
for us to eat, such as she had gathered through the 
day. It was only corn meal and pease and ham-bone 
and skins which she had for our supper. She had 
started a little fire, and said, " Some of you close 
that door, ' ' for it was cold. She swung the pot over 
the fire and filled it with the pease and ham-bone 
and skins. Then she seated her little brood around 
the fire on the pieces of blanket, where we watched 
with all our eyes, our hearts filled with desire, look- 
ing to see what she would do next. She took down 
an old broken earthen bowl, and tossed into it the 
little meal she had brought, stirring it up with water, 
making a hoe cake. She said, " One of you draw 
that griddle out here," and she placed it on the few 
little coals. Perhaps this griddle you have never 
seen, or one like it. I will describe it to you. This 
griddle was a round piece of iron, quite thick, having 
three legs. It might have been made in a black- 
smith's shop, for I have never seen one like it before 
or since. It was placed upon the coals, and with an 
old iron spoon she put on this griddle half of the 
corn meal she had mixed up. She said, " I will put 

40 



REMINISCENCES 



a tin plate over this, and put it away for your break- 
fast." We five children were eagerly watching the 
pot boiling, with the pease and ham-bone. The rain 
was pattering on the roof of the hut. All at once 
there came a knock at the door. My mother answered 
the knock. When she opened the door, there stood a 
white woman and three little children, all dripping 
with the rain. My mother said, ' ' In the name of the 
Lord, where are you going on such a night, with 
these children? " The woman said, " Auntie, I am 
travelling. Will you please let me stop here to-night, 
out of the rain, with my children? " My mother 
said, " Yes, honey. I ain't got much, but what I 
have got I will share with you. " ' ' God bless you ! ' ' 
They all came in. We children looked in wonder at 
what had come. But my mother scattered her own 
little brood and made a place for the forlorn wan- 
derers. She said, '' Wait, honey, let me turn over 
that hoe cake. ' ' Then the two women fell to talking, 
each telling a tale of woe. After a time, my mother 
called out, ' ' Here, you, Louise, or some one of you, 
put some fagots under the pot, so these pease can 
get done. ' ' We couldn't put them under fast enough, 
first one and then another of us children, the mothers 
still talking. Soon my mother said, ' ' Draw that hoe 
cake one side, I guess it is done." My mother said 

41 



EEMIIsHSCEiNTCES 



to the woman, " Honey, ain't you got no husband? " 
She said, " No, my husband got killed in the war." 
My mother replied, " Well, my husband died right 
after the war. I have been away from my little 
brood for four years. With a hard struggle, I have 
got them away from the Farrin plantation, for they 
did not want to let them go. But I got them. I was 
determined to have them. But they would not let 
me have them if they could have kept them. With 
God's help I will keep them from starving. The 
white folks are good to me. They give me work, and 
I know, with God's help, I can get along." The 
white woman replied, " Yes, Auntie, my husband left 
me on a rich man's plantation. This man promised 
to look out for me until my husband came home ; but 
he got killed in the war, and the Yankees have set 
his negroes free and he said he could not help me any 
more, and we would have to do the best we could for 
ourselves. I gave my things to a woman to keep 
for me until I could find my kinsfolk. They live 
about fifty miles from here, up in the country. I 
am on my way there now." My mother said, ** How 
long will it take you to get there ? " ' ' About three 
days, if it don't rain." My mother said, " Ain't 
you got some waj^ to ride there? " " No, Auntie, 



42 



REMIIsTISCENCES 



there is no way of riding up where my folks live, the 
place where I am from." 

We hoped the talk was most ended, for we were 
anxiously watching that pot. Pretty soon my mother 
seemed to realize our existence. She exclaimed, 
'' My Lord! I suppose the little children are nearly 
starved. Are those pease done, young ones? " She 
turned and said to the white woman, '' Have you-all 
had anything to eat? " " We stopped at a house 
about dinner time, but the woman didn't have any- 
thing but some bread and buttermilk." My mother 
said, " Well, honey, I ain't got but a little, but I will 
divide with you." The woman said, '' Thank you. 
Auntie. You just give my children a little; I can do 
without it. ' ' 

Then came the dividing. We all watched with all 
our eyes to see what the shares would be. My mother 
broke a mouthful of bread and put it on each of the 
tin plates. Then she took the old spoon and equally 
divided the pea soup. We children were seated 
around the fire, with some little wooden spoons. But 
the wooden spoons didn't quite go round, and some 
of us had to eat with our fingers. Our share of the 
meal, however, was so small that we were as hungry 
when we finished as when we began. 

My mother said, " Take that rag and wipe your 

43 



EEMINISCENCES 



face and hands, and give it to the others and let them 
use it, too. Put those plates upon the table." We 
immediately obeyed orders, and took our seats again 
around the fire. ' ' One of you go and pull that straw 
out of the corner and get ready to go to bed." We 
all lay down on the straw, the white children with us, 
and my mother covered us over with the blanket. 
We were soon in the " Land of Nod," forgetting our 
empty stomachs. The two mothers still continued to 
talk, sitting down on the only seats, a couple of 
blocks. A little back against the wall my mother and 
the white woman slept. 

Bright and early in the morning we were called 
up, and the rest of the hoe cake was eaten for break- 
fast, with a little meat, some coffee sweetened with 
molasses. The little wanderers and their mother 
shared our meal, and then they started again on their 
journey towards their home among their kinsfolk, 
and we never saw them again. My mother said, 
' ' God bless you ! I wish you all good luck. I hope 
you will reach your home safely. ' ' Then mother said 
to us, " You young ones put away that straw and 
sweep up the place, because I have to go to my 
work. ' ' But she came at noon and brought us a nice 
dinner, more satisfactory than the supper and break- 
fast we had had. We children were delighted that 

44 



REMINISCENCES 



there were no little white children to share our meal 
this time. 

In time, my older sister, Caroline, and myself got 
work among good people, where we soon forgot all 
the hard times in the little log cabin by the roadside 
in Clayton, Alabama. 

Up to my womanhood, even to this day, these mem- 
ories fill my mind. Some kind friends ' eyes may see 
these pages, and may they recall some fond memories 
of their happy childhood, as what I have written 
brings back my young life in the great Sunny South. 

I am something of the type of Moses on this 49th 
birthday ; not that I am wrapped in luxuries, but that 
my. thoughts are wrapped in the luxuries of the 
heavenly life in store for me, when my life work is 
done, and my friends shall be blessed by the work I 
shall have done. For God has commanded me to 
write this book, that some one may read and receive 
comfort and courage to do what God commands them 
to do. God bless every soul who shall read this true 
life story of one born in slavery. 

It is now six years since the inspiration to write 
this book came to me in the Franklin evening school. 
I have struggled on, helped by friends. God said, 
* ' Write the book and I will help you. ' ' And He has. 

It was through a letter of my life that the principal 

45 



KEMINISCENCES 



of the Franklin school said, " Write the book and I 
will help you." But he died before the next term, 
and I worked on. On this, my 49th birthday, I can 
say I believe that the book is close to the finish. 

My life is like the summer rose 
That opens to the morning sky, 
But ere the shades of evening close 
Is scattered on the ground to die. 
Yet on the rose's humble bed 
The sweetest dews of night are shed, 
As if she wept a tear for me, 
As if she wept the waste to see. 

My life is like the autumn leaf 
That trembles in the moon's pale ray. 
Its hold is frail, its date is brief, 
Restless, and soon to pass away. 
Yet, ere that leaf shall fall and fade. 
The parent tree will mourn its shade, 
The winds bewail the leafless tree; 
But none shall breathe a sigh for me. 

My life is like the prints which feet 
Have left on Tampa's desert strand. 
Soon as the rising tide shall beat 
All trace will vanish from the sand. 
Yet, as if grieving to efface 
All vestige of the human race, 
On that lone shore loud moans the sea. 
But none, alas, shall mourn for me. 



46 



A VISION 



Ji Ji J> A VISION Ji A A 

There remains to be told the story of my conver- 
sion and how I came to write the foregoing history 
of my life. 

In 1875 I was taken sick. I thought I was going 
to die, and I promised the Lord I would serve Him 
if he would only spare my life. When I got well 
again, however, I forgot all about my promise. 
Then I was taken sick again. It seemed I had to 
go through a dark desert place, where great demons 
stood on either side. In the distance I could just 
see a dim light, and I tried to get to this light, but 
could not reach it. Then I found myself in a great 
marsh, and was sinking. I threw up my hands and 
said, " Lord, if Thou wilt raise me from this pit, 
I will never fail to serve Thee." Then it seemed 
as if I mounted on wings into the air, and all the 
demons that stood about made a great roaring. My 
flight ended on the top of a hill. But I was troubled 
because I could not find the hght. All at once, at 
the sound of a loud peal of thunder, the earth 

49 



MEMORIES OF LIFE IN THE NORTH 

opened, and I fell down into the pits of hell. Again 
I prayed to God to save me from this, and again I 
promised to serve Him. My prayer was answered, 
and I was able to fly out of the pit, on to a bank. 
At the foot of the little hill on which I sat were some 
little children, and they called to me to come down. 
But I could not get down. Then the children raised 
a ladder for me, and I came down among them. A 
little cherub took me by the hand and led me in 
the River of Badjied of Jordan. I looked at my 
ankles and shoulders and discovered I had little 
wings. On the river was a ship. The children, the 
cherub and I got into the ship. When we reached 
a beautiful spot, the little cherub made the ship 
fast, and there opened before us pearly gates, and 
we all passed through into the golden street. The 
street led to the throne of God, about which we 
marched. Then the cherub conducted us to a table 
where a feast was spread. Then the children van- 
ished. The cherub took me by the hand, and said, 
' * Go back into the world, and tell the saints and sin- 
ners what a Savior you have found, and if you prove 
faithful I will take you to lieaven to live forever, 
when I come again." 

Wlien I recovered from my sickness, I was bap- 
tized by the Rev. Dr. Pope, and joined the church 

50 



MEMORIES OF LIFE IN^ THE NQETH 

in Macon. When I came North, I brought my letter. 
Not finding any church for colored people, I came 
among the white people, and was treated so kindly 
that I became very much attached to them. The 
first church I became connected with in the North, 
was in Newtonville. When I came to Boston, I 
went to the Warren Avenue Baptist Church. Be- 
fore my marriage I joined Tremont Temple, when 
Dr. Lorimer was its pastor. When the church was 
burned, my letter was destroyed, but when I went 
South on a visit I had the letter duplicated, and took 
it to the new Temple. I am still a member of the 
Temple, and hope to remain there as long as God 
gives me life. 

Five years ago, I began to go to the Franklin 
evening school. Mr. Guild was the master. At one 
time he requested all the pupils to write the story of 
their lives, and he considered my composition so in- 
teresting he said he thought if I could work it up 
and enlarge upon it, I could write a book. He prom- 
ised to help me. My teacher was Miss Emerson, and 
she was interested in me. But the next year Miss 
Emerson gave up teaching, and Mr. Guild died. 

In each of the terms that I have attended, I have 
received the certificates showing that I have been 
regular and punctual in attendance, have maintained 

51 



MEMORIES OF LIFE IN THE NORTH 

good deportment, and shown general proficiency in 
the studies. I would have graduated in 1907, had it 
not been for sickness. The following was to have 
been my graduating composition. 




52 



ABRAHAM LINCOLN 



ANNIE L. BURTON 



^ ABRAHAM LINCOLN ^ 

In a little clearing- in the backwoods of Harding 
County, Kentucky, there stood years ago a rude 
cabin within whose walls Abraham Lincoln passed 
his childhood. An "• unaccountable " man he has 
been called, and the adjective was well chosen, for 
who could account for a mind and nature like Lin- 
coln's with the ancestry he owned! His father was 
a thriftless, idle carpenter, scarcely supporting his 
family, and with but the poorest living. His mother 
was an uneducated woman, but must have been of 
an entirely ditferent nature, for she was able to 
impress upon her boy a love of learning. During 
her life, his chief, in fact his only book, was the 
Bible, and in this he learned to read. Just before 
he was nine years old, the father brought his family 
across the Ohio River into Illinois, and there in the 
unfloored log cabin, minus windows and doors, 
Abraham lived and grew. It was during this time 
that the mother died, and in a short time the shift- 
less father with his family drifted back to the old 

55 



ABRAHAM LINCOLN 



home, and here found another for Ms children in 
one who was a friend of earlier days. This woman 
was of a thrifty nature, and her energy made him 
floor the cabin, hang doors, and open up windows. 
She was fond of the children and cared for them 
tenderly, and to her the boy Abraham owed many 
pleasant hours. 

As he grew older, his love for knowledge in- 
creased and he obtained whatever books he could, 
studying by the firelight, and once walking six miles 
for an English Grammar. After he read it, he 
walked the six miles to return it. He needed the 
book no longer, for with this as with his small col- 
lection of books, what he once read was his. He 
absorbed the books he read. 

During these early years he did " odd jobs " for 
the neighbors. Even at this age, his gift of story 
telling was a notable one, as well as his sterling 
honesty. His first knowledge of slavery in all its 
horrors came to him when he was about twenty-one 
years old. He had made a trip to New Orleans, and 
there in the old slave market he saw an auction. 
His face paled, and his spirits rose in revolt at the 
coarse jest of the auctioneer, and there he regis- 
tered a vow within himself, '' If ever I have a chance 
to strike against slavery, I will strike and strike 

56 



ABRAHAM LINCOLN 



hard. ' ' To this end he worked and for this he paid 
** the last full measure of devotion." 

His political life began with a defeat for the Hli- 
nois Legislature in 1830, but he was returned in 
1834, 1836, 1838, and declined re-election in 1840, 
preferring to study law and prepare for his future. 
"■ Honest Abe " he has been called, and throughout 
Illinois that characteristic was the prominent one 
known of him. From this time his rise was rapid. 
Sent to the Congress of the nation, he seldom spoke, 
but when he did his terse though simple expression 
always won him a hearing. His simplicity and 
frankness was deceptive to the political leaders, and 
from its very fearlessness often defeated them. 

His famous debates with Senator Douglas, the 
' ' Little Giant, ' ' spread his reputation from one end 
of the country to the other, and at their close there 
was no question as to Lincoln's position in the 
North, or on the vital question of the day. 

The spirit of forbearance he carried with him to 
the White House, ^' with malice toward none, with 
charity for all." This was the spirit that carried 
him through the four awful years of the war. The 
martyr's crown hovered over him from the outset. 
The martyr's spirit was always his. The burden of 
the war always rested on his shoulders. The 

57 



ABKAHAM LINCOLI^ 



fathers, sons and brothers, the honored dead of 
Gettysburg, of Antietam, all lay upon his mighty 
heart. 

He never forgot his home friends, and when occa- 
sionally one dropped in on him, the door was always 
open. They frequently had tea in the good old- 
fashioned way, and then Lincoln listened to the news 
of the village, old stories were retold, new ones told, 
and the old friendships cemented by new bonds. 

Then came the end, swift and sudden, and gloom 
settled upon the country; for in spite of ancestry, 
self-education, ungainly figure, ill-fitting clothes, the 
soul of the man had conquered even the stubborn 
South, while the cold-blooded North was stricken 
to the heart. The noblest one of all had been taken. 




58 



The Race Question in America 



DR. P. THOMAS STANFORD 



THE RACE QUESTION IN AMERICA 

BY 

DR. P. THOMAS STANFORD 

Author of thb "Tragedy of the Negro in America" 



As a member of the negro race, I myself have suffered 
as a child whose parents were born in slavery, deprived of all 
influences of the ennobling life, made obedient to the will of 
the white man by the lash and chain, and sold to the highest 
bidder when there was no more use for them. 

The first negro fact for white thought is — that my 
clients, the colored people here in America, are not responsible 
for being here any more than they are responsible for 
their conditions of ignorance and poverty. They suddenly 
emerge from their prison house poor, without a home, without 
food or clothing, and ignorant. Now the enemies of God and 
of the progress of civilization in our comitry are to-day intro- 
ducing a system of slavery with which they hope to again 
enslave the colored people. To carry out their evil designs 
they retain able politicians, lawyers and newspapers to repre- 
sent them, such as Senator Tillman, the Hon. John Temple 
Graves of Georgia and the Baltimore Sun, and they are try- 
ing the negro on four counts which allege that the race is 
ignorant, cannot be taught, is lazy and immoral. 

61 



THE KACE QUESTION IN AMERICA 

jS"ow, are the negroes, as a whole, guilty of these charges ? 
In the jfirst place, the negro race of America is not ignorant. 
In the year 1833 John C. Calhoun, senator from South Caro- 
lina, is reported to have said that if he could find a single 
negro who understood the Greek s}Titax, he would believe 
the negro was human and would treat him as such. At that 
time it was a very safe test. God accepted the challenge in 
behalf of the negro race, and inspired his white sons and 
daughters both in the North and South to teach their brothers 
in black; and a few years afterward black men were exam- 
ined and the world pronounced them scholars, while later 
still the schools were using a Greek grammar written by a 
black man, W. S. Scarborough of Wilberforce, 0. In his 
class were Frederick Douglas, Henry Highland Garnett, 
Eobert Elliot, the Rev. J. C. Price and John M. Langstone, 
as defenders of the race. Bishop Allen Pa}Tie, Bishop Hood 
and John B. Reaver will ever be remembered for their godly 
piety and Christian example, as we shall also remember 
Bishop, Sumner and Bubois for their great literary produc- 
tions, William Washington Brown as the greatest organizer 
aiid financier of the century, Prof. Booker Washington as the 
greatest industrial educator of the world, and last, but not 
least, Thomas Condon, the greatest crank for the spiritual 
training and higher education of the negro race. 

Under the leadership of such men, assisted by our white 
friends and backed up by our colored race journals — the 
Christian Banner of Philadelphia, the Christian Recorder, the 
Star of Zion and the Afro-American Ledger of Baltimore, 

62 



THE RACE QUESTION IN" AMERICA 

Ind., the National Baptist Union of Pennsylvania, the Age 
of New York, the Christian Organizer of Virginia and the 
Guardian of Boston — our onward march to civilization is 
phenomenal and by these means we have reduced illiteracy 
50 per cent. 

" In the South we have over $12,000,000 worth of school 
property, 3,000 teachers, 50 high schools, 17 academies, 125 
colleges, 10 law and medical schools, 25 theological seminaries, 
all doing a mighty work for God and humanity. 

Now as to laziness. We have now in practice 14,000 
lawyers and doctors, and have accumulated over $150,000,000 
worth of church property. In the South we have over 150,000 
farms and houses, valued at $900,000,000, and personal prop- 
erty at $170,000,000. We have raised over $11,000,000 for 
educational purposes. The property per capita for every 
colored man, woman and child in the United States is esti- 
mated at $75, and we are operating successfully several banks 
and factories; we have 7,500,000 acres of land, and the busi- 
ness activity of the colored people was never as thoroughly 
aroused as it is to-day. 

When I come to deal with the charge of immorality I 
bow my head and blush for shame, first because if the charge 
be true, I see they are getting like the white man every day. 
I know that at the close of the American civil war the 4,000,- 
000 negroes had more than 25 per cent, of white blood cours- 
ing through their veins. 

What about this new educated negro? Just ask the 
Pullman Car Company, which employs hundreds of negroes, 

63 



THE RACE QUESTION IN AMERICA 

into whose care thousands of women and children of our best 
American families are entrusted every day. 

Now, you cannot do without the negro, because if you 
send him away, you will run after him. He is here to stay. 
The only way to deal successfully with the colored race is 
God's way. First, recognize that he is your guest; second, 
recognize that you have robbed him of his birthplace, home, 
family and savings. It is these facts that are causing so much 
unrest on the part of the whites in this country. The negro 
loves his country, which he has proved beyond a doubt in every 
American battle, in every act of loyalty to his country, and 
in his long and patient suffering. Pay him what you owe 
him by educating him. Give him an opportunity to live. 
Allow him to live in decent parts of your city. Pay wages 
sufficient to support his children. Do this and God will re- 
move the objectionable negro from the land. 

The Negro stands to-day upon an eminence that overlooks 
more than two decades spent in efforts to ameliorate the con- 
dition of seven million immortal souls by opening before 
their hitherto dark and cheerless lives possibilities of develop- 
ment into a perfect and symmetrical manhood and woman- 
hood. 

The retrospect presents to us a picture of a people's moral 
degradation and mental gloom caused by slavery. A people 
absolutely sunk in the lowest depth of a poverty which re- 
duced them to objects of charity and surrounded them with 
difficulties which have ever stood as impregnable barriers in 

64 



THE RACE QUESTION IN AMERICA 

their way to speedy advancement in all those qualities that 
make the useful citizen. Every influence of state and society 
life seems to be against their progress and like some evil 
genius, these Negro hating ghosts are forever hunting them 
with the idea that their future must be one of subserviency 
to the white race. 

Hated and oppressed by the combined wisdom, wealth and 
statesmanship of a mighty confederacy who watched and criti- 
cised their mistakes which were strongly magnified by those 
who fain would write destruction upon the Emancipation; 
they are expected to rise from this condition. 

The idea of giving to the newly enfranchised a sound, prac- 
tical education was considered at the dawn of freedom, an 
easy solution of what as an unsolved problem threatened the 
perpetuity of republican institutions. Within, a year from 
the firing on Sumter, benevolent and farsighted Northern 
friends had established schools from Washington to the Gulf 
of Mexico, which became centers of light penetrating the 
darkness and scattering the blessings of an enlightened man- 
hood far and wide. 

The history of the world cannot produce a more affecting 
spectacle than the growth of this mighty Christian philan- 
thropy which, in beginning amid the din of battle, has stead- 
ily marched on through every opposing influence, and lifted 
a race from weakness to strength, from poverty to wealth, 
from moral and intellectual nonentity to place and power 
among the nations of the earth. 

We have ten millions of colored people in the United States 

65 



THE EACE QUESTIOI^ 11^ AMEKICA 

whose condition is much better to-day than it was fifty years 
ago. Then he had nothing, not even a name. To-day he 
has 160,000 farms under good cultivation and valued at 
$4,000,000 and has personal property valued at $200,000,000. 
In the Southland the negroes own 160 first-class drug stores, 
nine banks, 13 building associations, and 100 insurance and 
benefit companies, two street railways and an electric at Jack- 
sonville, Fla., which they started some few years ago when 
the white people passed the Jim Crow law for that state. 

Now it is reckoned that the negroes in the United States 
are paying about $700,000,000 property taxes and this is 
only one-fifth of all they have accumulated, for the negro is 
getting more like the white people every day and has learned 
from him that it is not a sign of loyalty and patriotism to 
publish his property at its full taxable value. 

In education and morals the progress is still greater. As 
you all know, at the close of the war the whole race was 
practically illiterate. It was a rare thing, indeed, to find a 
man of the race who even knew his letters. In 1880 the il- 
literacy had fallen to 70 per cent, and rapid strides along that 
line have been made ever since. 

To-day there are 37,000 negro teachers in America, of 
which number 23,000 are regular graduates of high and 
normal schools and colleges, 23 are college presidents, 169 
are principals of seminaries and many are principals of higher 
institutions. At present there arc 369 negro men and women 
taking courses in the universities of Europe. The negro 
ministry, together with these teachers have been prepared for 

66 



THE EACE QUESTIOIT IN AMEEICA 



their work by our schools and are the greatest factors the 
North has produced for the uplift of the colored man. 

To-day there are those who wish to impede the negro's 
progress and lessen his educational advantages by industrial- 
izing such colleges as Howard University of Washington by 
placing on their Boards of Trustees and Managers the pro- 
nounced leaders of industrialism, giving as a reason that the 
better he is educated the worse he is; in other words, they 
say crime has increased among educated negroes. While stern 
fsCcis show the opposite, the exact figures from the last census 
show that the greater proportion of the negro criminals are 
from the illiterate class. To-day the marriage vow, which by 
the teaching of the whites the negro held to be of so little - 
importance before the war, is guarded more sacredly. The 
one room cabin, with its attendant evils, is passing away, 
and the negro woman, the mightiest moral factor in the life 
of her people, is beginning to be more careful in her deport- 
ment and is no longer the easy victim of the unlicensed pas- 
sion of certain white men. This is a great gain and is a 
sign of real progress, for no race can risa. higher than its 
women. 

Let me plead with the friends of the negro. Please con- 
tinue to give him higher ideals of a better life and stand 
by him in the struggle. He has done well with the oppor- 
tunities given him and is doing something along all the 
walks of life to help himself, which is gratitude of the best 
sort. What he needs to-day is moral sympathy, which in his 
condition years ago he could hardly appreciate. The sym- 

67 



THE EACE QUESTION I]^ AMERICA 

pathy must be moral, not necessarily social. It must be the 
sympathy of a soul set on fire for righteousness and fair play 
in a republic like ours. A sympathy which will see to it that 
every man shall have a man's chance in all the affairs of this 
great nation which boasts of being the land of the free and 
the home of the brave for which the black man has suffered 
and done so much in every sense of the word. 

Let this great Christian nation of eighty millions of people 
do justice to the Black Battalion, and seeing President Eoose- 
velt acknowledges that he overstepped the bounds of his power 
in discharging and renouncing them before they had a fair 
trial, and now that they are vindicated before the world, to 
take back what he called them. Cutthroats, Brutal Murderers, 
Black Midnight Assassins, and Cowards. This and this 
alone will to some extent atone for the wrong he has done 
and help him to regain the respect and confidence of the 
world. 

Now in order to change the condition of things, I would 
suggest: First, that an international, industrial association 
be formed to help Afro-Americans to engage in manufac- 
turing and commercial pursuits, assist them to buy farms, 
erect factories, open shops in which their young men and 
women can enter and produce what the world requires every 
day for its inhabitants. 

If they were able to-day to produce the articles in common 
use as boots, shoes, hats, cotton and woolen goods, made-up 
clothing and enterprises such as farming, mining, forging, 
carpentering, etc., negroes would find a ready sale in prefer- 

68 



THE RACE QUESTIOJT IJsT AMEEICA 

ence to all others, because of its being a race enterprise, doing 
what no other corporation does, giving employment to mem- 
bers of the race as tradesmen, and teaching others to become 
skilled workers. These enterprises should be started in the 
southern, northern and western states, where the negro popu- 
lation will warrant such an undertaking. 

I would suggest " A School History of the Negro Race ■' 
to be placed in our public schools as a text book. The gen- 
eral tone of all the histories taught in our public schools 
points to the inferiority of the negro and the superiority of 
the white. It must be indeed a stimulus to any people to 
be able to refer to their ancestry as distinguished in deeds 
of valor, and particularly so to the colored people. With 
what eyes can the white child look upon the colored child 
and the colored child look upon himself, when they have com- 
pleted the assigned course of United States history, and in 
it found not one word of credit, not one word of favorable 
comment for even one among the millions of his fore-parents 
who have lived through nearly three centuries of his country's 
history. In them he is credited with no heritage of valor, 
he is mentioned only as a slave, while true historical records 
prove him to have been among the bravest of soldiers and 
a faithful producer of the nation's wealth. Though then a 
slave to the government, the negro's was the first blood shed 
in its defence in those days when a foreign foe threatened 
its destruction. In each and all of the American wars the 
negro was faithful, yes, faithful in battle while members 
of his race were being lynched to death; faithful to a land 

6Q 



THE EACE QUESTION IN AMERICA 

not his own in points of rights and freedom, all and that 
after he had enriched with his own life's blood, shouldered 
his musket to defend, when all this was done, regarded him 
with renewed terms, Black, Negro. 

Last but not least the negro needs a daily newspaper in 
every large city, managed and edited by members of the race. 

Such papers are needed to deal with questions of state and 
reflect the thoughts of the social world, to enter the province 
of ethics and tread the domain of morals and to give their 
opinion on the varying phases of religious truths and pass 
judgment on matters of a political nature. 

There are hidden wrongs perpetrated by the whites against 
the negro race that will never be brought to light until the 
race owns and controls its own daily newspapers which alone 
have the power to discover and enthrone truth, thus becoming 
a safe guide to all honest seekers of facts respecting the race 
whether from a moral, educational, political or religious field. 
To carry out the plans suggested, whether viewed from an 
intellectual, industrial, commercial, or editorial standpoint, 
the world must acloiowledge that to-day the negro race has 
the men and women, who are true to their race and all that 
stands for negro progress. 



70 



HISTORICAL COMPOSITION 



ANNIE L. BURTON 



HISTORICAL COMPOSITION 



It is only 132 years ago to-day that the British troops, 
who had occupied Boston, made a riding school of the Old 
South church, and otherwise sacrilegiously disported them- 
selves, were persuaded to get out under the compulsion of 
the batteries set up on Dorchester Heights. But when the 
last company embarked for Halifax, it carried the last Brit- 
ish flag ever unfurled by a military organization on Massa- 
chusetts soil. That was the end of foreign domination in 
Massachusetts. And by a happy coincidence this is the 
legendary anniversary of the birth of St. Patrick, the patron 
saint of Ireland, whose memory has been an inspiration in 
the struggle of another race for Liberty. 




73 



A QUESTION OF ETHICS 

ISTew York, Dec. 17. — Andrew Carnegie declared yester- 
day in a speech on the negro question that the negroes are 
a blessing to America, and that their presence in the South 
makes this country impregnable and without need of a navy 
to defend itself. 

" Suppose," said Mr. Carnegie, " Great Britain were to 
send her war fleets to America. It would amount to nothing. 
All that the President of the United States would have to 
do would be to say, ' Stop exporting cotton.' The war would 
be ended in four days, for England cannot do without our 
cotton. 

" We don't need a navy ; we are impregnable. Because we 
have 9,000,000 colored men anxious and willing to work 
we hold this strong position, and I am interested in the negro 
from this material standpoint, as well as from the more 
humane point of view." 



74 



MY FAVORITE POEMS 



j« ^ MY FAVORITE POEMS ^ * 

Verses 

On a green slope, most fragrant with the Spring, 

One sweet, fair day I planted a red rose. 
That grew, beneath my tender nourishing, 

So tall, so riotous of bloom, that those 
Who passed the little valley where it grew 

Smiled at its beauty. All the air was sweet 
About it ! Still I tended it, and knew 

That he would come, e'en as it grew complete. 

And a day brought him ! Up I led him, where 

In the wai-m sun my rose bloomed gloriously — 
Smiling and saying, Lo, is it not fair? 

And all for thee — all thine ! But he passed by 
Coldly, and answered. Rose? I see no rose, — 

Leaving me standing in the barren vale 
Alone ! alone ! feeling the darkness close 

Deep o'er my heart, and all my being fail. 

Then came one, gently, yet with eager tread, 
Begging one rose-bud — but my rose was dead. 

77 



MY FAVOKITE POEMS 



Verses 

The old, old Wind that whispers to old trees, 

Round the dark country when the sun has set, 
Goes murmuring' still of unremembered seas 

And cities of the dead that men forget — 
An old blind beggar-man, distained and gray, 

With ancient tales to tell, 
Mumbling of this and that upon his way. 

Strange song and muttered spell — 
Neither to East or West, or South or North, 

His habitation lies, 
This roofless vagabond who wanders forth 

Aye under alien skies — 
A gypsy of the air, he comes and goes 

Between the tall trees and the shadowed grass, 
And what he tells only the twilight knows ... 

The tall trees and the twilight hear him pass. 

To him the Dead stretch forth their strengthless hands, 
He who campaigns in other climes than this, 

He who is free of the Unshapen Lands, 
The empty homes of Dis. 

Verses 

Out of the scattered fragments 

Of castles I built in the air 
I gathered enough together 

To fashion a cottage with care; 
Thoughtfully, slowly, I planned it. 

And little by little it grew — 
Perfect in form and in substance. 

Because I designed it for you. 

78 



MY FAVOEITE POEMS 



The castles that time has shattered 

Gleamed spotless and pearly white 
As they stood in the misty distance 

That borders the Land of Delight; 
Sleeping and waking I saw them 

Grow brighter and fairer each dayj 
But, alas ! at the touch of a finger 

They trembled and crumbled away! 



Then out of the dust I gathered 

A bit of untarnished gold, 
And a gem unharmed by contact 

With stones of a baser mold; 
For sometimes a priceless jewel 

Gleams wondrously pure and fair 
From glittering paste foundations 

Of castles we see in the air. 



So, I turned from the realms of fancy, 

As remote as the stars above, 
And into the land of the living 

I carried the jewel of love; 
The mansions of dazzling brightness 

Have crumbled away, it is true; 
But firm upon gold foundations 

Stands the cottage I built for you ! 



79 



MY FAVOKITE POEMS 



Verses 

You do but jest, sir, and you jest not well. 

How could the hand be enemy of the arm. 

Or seed and sod be rivals'? How could light 

Feel jealousy of heat, plant of the leaf, 

Or competition dwell 'twist lip and smile? 

Are we not part and parcel of yourselves? 

Like strands in one great braid we intertwine 

And make the perfect whole. You could not be 

Unless we gave you birth : we are the soil 

From which you sprang, yet sterile were that soil 

Save as you planted. (Though in the Book we read 

One woman bore a child with no man's aid, ? 

We find no record of a man-child born 

Without the aid of woman ! Fatherhood 

Is but a small achievement at the best. 

While motherhood is heaven and hell.) 

This ever-growing argument of sex 

Is most unseemly, and devoid of sense. 

Why waste more time in controversy, when 

There is not time enough for all of love. 

Our rightful occupation in this life? 

Why prate of oi;r defects — of where we fail, 

When just the stoiy of our worth would need 

Eternity for telling; and our best 

Development comes ever through your praise. 

As through our praise you reach your highest self? 

Oh ! had you not been miser of your praise 

And let our virtues be tlieir own reward, 



80 



MY FAVORITE POEMS 



The old established order of the world 

Would never have been changed. Small blame is ours 

For this unsexing of ourselves, and worse 

Effeminizing of the male. We were 

Content, sir, till you starved us, heart and brain. 

All we have done, or wise or otherwise, 

Traced to the root, was done for love of you. 

Let us taboo all vain comparisons, 

And go forth as God meant us, hand in hand, 

Companions, mates and comrades evermore; 

Two parts of one divinely ordained whole. 

Verses 

A widow had two sons. 

And one knelt at her knees, 
And sought to give her joy 

And toiled to give her ease; 
He heard his country's call 

And longed to go, to die 
If God so willed, but saw 
Her tears and heard her sigh. 

A widow had two sons, 

One filled her days with care 
And creased her brow and brought 

Her many a whitened hair 
His country called — he went. 

Nor thought to say good-by, 
And recklessly he fought, 

And died as heroes die. 

81 



MY FAVORITE POEMS 



A widow had two sons, 

One fell as heroes fall, 
And one remained and toiled. 

And gave to her his all. 
She watched " her hero's " grave 

In dismal days and fair, 
And told the world her love. 

Her heart was buried there. 

Our Mission 

In the legends of the Norsemen, 

Stories quaint and weird and wild, 
There's a strange and thrilling story, 

Of a mother and her child. 
And that child, so runs the storj , 

In those quaint old Norsemen books, 
Fell one day from dangerous play ground, 

Dashed in pieces on tlie rocks ; 
But with gentle hand that mother 

Gathered every tender part. 
Bore them gently, torn and bleeding. 

On her loving mother heart. 
And within her humble dwelling. 

Strong in faith and brave of soul. 
With her love-song low and tender 

Rocked and sang the fragments whole. 
Such the mission of the Christian, 

Taught by Christ so long ago ; 
This the mark that bids us stay not. 

This the spirit each should know : 
Rent and torn by sin the race is. 

Heart from heart, and soul from soul ; 
This our task with Christ's sweet love-song. 

Join, and heal, and make them whole. 

— Rev. E. M. BartUtt 

82 



MY FAVOEITE POEMS 



Verses 

Lord over all ! Whose power the sceptre swayed, 
Ere first Creation's wondrous form was framed, 

When by His will Divine all things were made ; 
Then, King, Almighty was His name proclaimed. 

When all shall cease — the imiverse be o'er, 
In awful greatness He alone will reign, 

Who was. Who is, and Who will evermore 
In glory most refulgent still remain. 

Sole God! unequalled and beyond compare, 

Without division or associate ; 
Without commencing date, or final year. 

Omnipotent He reigns in awful state. 

He is my God ! my living Savior He ! 

My sheltering Rock in sad misfortune's hour ! 
My standard, refuge, portion, still shall be, 

My lot's disposer when I seek His power. 

Into His hands my spirit I consign 

Whilst wrapped in sleep, that I again may wake. 
And with my soul, ray body I resign ; 

The Lord's with me — no fears my soul can shake. 



83 



MY FAVOEITE POEMS 



THE CREATION 

BY 

ANNIE L. BURTON 

The earth, the firmament on high, 
With all the blue ethereal sky, 
Were made by God's creative power 
Six thousand years ago or more. 
Man, too, was formed to till the ground; 
Birds, beasts, and fish to move around; 
The fish to swim, the birds to fly, 
And all to praise the Love most high. 
This world is round, wise men declare. 
And hung on nothing in the air. 
The moon around the earth doth run; 

The earth moves on its center, too; 
The earth and moon around the sun 

As wheels and tops and pulleys do. 
Water and land make up the whole. 

From East to West, from pole to pole. 
Vast mountains rear their lofty heads, 

Rivers roll down their sandy beds; 
And all join in one grand acclaim 

To praise the Lord's almighty name. 

84 



MY FAVORITE HYMNS 



^ ^ MY FAVORITE HYMNS ^ ^ 



The Ninety and Nine 

There were ninety and nine that safely lay 

In the shelter of the fold, 
But one was out on the hills away, 

Far-off from the gates of gold — 
Away on the mountains lone and bare. 
Away from the tender Shepherd's care. 

" Lord, Thou hast here Thy ninety and nine : 

Are they not enough for Thee ? " 
But the Shepherd made answer : " This of mine 

Has wandered away from me, 
And, although the road be rough and steep, 
I go to the desert to find my sheep." 

But none of the ransomed ever knew 

How deep were the waters crossed; 
Nor how dark was the night that the Lord passed through 

Ere he found His sheep that was lost. 
Out in the desert he heard the cry — 
Sick and helpless, and ready to die. 

'* Lord, whence are those blood-drops all the way 
That mark out the mountain's track? " 

87 



MY FAVOEITE HYM^^S 



" They were shed for one who had gone astray 

Ere the Shepherd could bring him back." 
" Lord, whence are Thy hands so rent and torn ? " 
" They are pierced tonight by many a thorn." 

But all through the mountains, thunder-riven, 

And up from the rocky steep, 
There arose a glad cry to the height of heaven, 

" Rejoice ! I have found my sheep ! " 
And the angels echoed around the throne : 
" Rejoice, for the Lord brings back His own ! " 



My Faith looks up to Thee 

My faith looks up to Thee, 
Thou Lamb of Calvary, 

Saviour divine ! 
Now hear me while I pray, 
Take all my guUt away, 
0, let me from this day 

Be wholly Thine. 

May Thy rich grace impart 
Strength to my fainting heart, 

My zeal inspire; 
As Thou hast died for me, 
0, may my love to Thee 
Pure, warm, and changeless be, 

A livinsr fire. 



MY FAVORITE HYM^Tg 



When ends life's transient dream, 
When death's cold, sullen stream 

Shall o'er me roll, 
Blest Saviour, then, in love. 
Fear and distrust remove; 
0, bear me safe above, 

A ransomed soul. 



Jordan's Strand 

My days are gliding swiftly by, 

And I, a pilgrim stranger. 
Would not detain them as they fly, 

Those hours of toil and danger. 

Chorus 
For, we stand on Jordan's strand. 

Our friends are passing over; 
And, just before, the shining shore 

We may almost discover! 

We'll gird our loins, my brethren dear, 
Our heavenly home diseernmg; 

Our absent Lord has left us word, 
" Let every lamp be burning." 

Should coming days be cold and dark, 
We need not cease our singing; 

That perfect rest nought can molest. 
Where golden harps are ringing. 

89 



MY FAVORITE HYMNS 



Let sorrow's rudest tempest blow, 

Each cord on earth to sever; 
Our King says, " Come ! " and there's our home, 

Forever, O forever. 



Over the Line 

tender and sweet was the Master's voice 
As he lovingly calFd to me, 

" Come over the line, it is only a step — 
I am waiting my child, for thee. 

Refrain 
" Over the line," hear the sweet refrain. 

Angels are chanting the heavenly strain: 
" Over the line," — Why should I remain 

With a step between me and Jesus? 

But my sins are many, my faith is small, 
Lo ! the answer came quick and clear; 

" Thou needest not trust in thyself at all, 
Step over the line, I am here." 

But my flesh is weak, I tearfully said, 
And the way I cannot see; 

1 fear if I try I may sadly fail. 
And thus may dishonor Thee. 

90 



MY FAVORITE HYMNS 



Ah, the world is cold, and I cannot go back 

Press forward I surely must; 
I will place my hand in his wounded palm 

Step over the line, and trust. 



O could I speak the Matchless Worth 

could I speak the matchless worth, 
could I sound the glories forth. 

Which in my Saviour shine, 
I'd soar, and touch the heav'nly strings, 
And vie with Gabriel while he sings. 

In notes almost divine. 



I'd sing the precious blood He spilt, 
My ransom from the dreadful guilt 

Of sin and wrath divine; 
I'd sing His glorious righteousness, 
In which all-perfect, heavenly dress 

My soul shall ever shine. 



I'd sing the characters He bears, 
And all the forms of love He wears. 

Exalted on His throne; 
In loftiest songs of sweetest praise, 
I would to everlasting days 

Make all His glories known. 

91 



MY FAVOEITE HYMNS 



Well, the delightful day will come 
When my dear Lord will bring me home, 

And I shall see His face; 
Then with my Saviour, Brother, Friend, 
A blest eternity I'll spend. 

Triumphant in His grace. 



O God, beneath Thy Guiding Hand 

God, beneath Thy guiding hand, 
Our exiled fathers cross'd the sea; 

And when they trod the wintry strand, 

With pray'r and psalm they worshipp'd Thee. 

Thou heard'st, well pleased, the song, the prayer : 
Thy blessing came and still its power 

Shall onward through all ages bear 
The memory of that holy hour. 

Laws, freedom, truth, and faith in God 
Came with those exiles o'er the waves; 

And where their pilgrim feet have trod, 
The God they trusted guards their graves. 

And here Thy name, God of love. 

Their children's children shall adore 
Till these eternal hills remove 
And spring adorns the earth no more. 

92 



MY FAVOEITE HYMNS 



America 

My country, 'tis of thee, 
Sweet land of liberty. 

Of thee I sing; 
Land where my fathers died, 
Land of the pilgrim's pride, 
From every mountain side 

Let freedom ring. 

My native country, thee, 
Land of the noble free. 

Thy name I love ; 
I love thy rocks and rills, 
Thy woods and templed hills; 
My heart with rapture thrills 

Like that above. 

Let music swell the breeze, 
And ring from all the trees 

Sweet fi'eedom's song; 
Let mortal tongues awake, 
Let all that breathe partake. 
Let rocks their silence break, 

The sound prolong. 

Our fathers' God to Thee, 
Author of liberty, 

To Thee we sing; 
Long may our land be bright 
With freedom's holy light; 
Protect us with Thy might, 

Great God our King. 

93 



MY FAVOKITE HYMNS 



In the Cross of Christ I Glory 

In the cross of Christ I glory, 

Towering o'er the wrecks of time; 

All the light of sacred story 
Gathers round its head sublime. 

When the woes of life o'ertake me, 
Hopes deceive and fears annoy. 

Never shall the cross forsake me: 
Lo ! it glows with peace and joy. 

When the sun of bliss is beaming 
Light and love upon my way. 

From the cross the radiance streaming. 
Add more luster to the day. 

Bane and blessing, pain and pleasure, 

By the cross are sanctified; 
Peace is there that knows no measure, 

Joys that through all time abide. 



Guide Me, O Thou Great Jehovah 

Guide me, O Thou great Jehovah, 
Pilgrim thro' this barren land; 

I am weak, but Thou art mighty; 
Hold me with Thy powerful hand; 

Bread of heaven, 
Feed me till I want no more. 

94 



MY FAVOEITE HYMNS 



Open now the crystal fountain 
Whence the healing waters flow; 

Let the fiery, cloudy pillar 

Lead me all my journey through; 

Strong Deliverer, 
Be Thou stUl my strength and shield. 

When I tread the verge of Jordan, 
Bid my anxious fears subside; 

Bear me through the swelling current, 
Land me safe on Canaan's side; 

Songs of praises 
I will ever give to Thee. 



Christ rcccivcth Sinful Men 

Sinners Jesus will receive; 

Soimd this word of grace to all 
Who the heav'nly pathway leave. 

All who linger, all who fall. 



Chorus 
Sing it o'er and o'er again : 

Christ reeeiveth sinful men ; 
Make the message clear and plain: 

Christ reeeiveth sinful men. 

95 



MY FAVOKITE HYM^^S 



Come, and He will give you rest; 

Trust Him, for His word is plain; 
He will take the sinfulest; 

Christ receiveth sinful men. 

Christ receiveth sinful men, 

Even me with all my sin; 
Purged from ev'ry spot and stain, 

Heav'n with Him I enter in. 



Some Day the Silver Cord will break 

Some day the silver cord will break. 
And I no more as now shall sing; 

But, 0, the joy when I shall wake 
Within the palace of the King! 

And I shall see Him face to face. 
And tell the story — Saved by grace. 

Some day my earthly house will fall, 
I cannot tell how soon 'twill be, 

But this I know — my All in All 
Has now a place in heaven for me. 

Some day; till then I'll watch and wait. 
My lamp all trimmed and burning bright, 

That when my Saviour ope's the gate. 
My soul to Him may take its flight. 



96 



t FD - ^^ 



MY FAVOEITE HYMNS 



Battle Hymn of the Republic 

Mine eyes have seen the glory of the coming of the Lord; 

He is trampling out the vintage where the grapes of wrath are 

stored ; 
He hath loos'd the fateful lightning of His terrible swift sword; 
His truth is marching on. 

I have seen Him in the watch-fires of a hundred circling camps; 
They have builded Him an altar in the evening dews and damps; 
I can read His righteous sentence in the dim and flaring lamps; 
His day is marching on. 

I have read a fiery gospel writ in burnished rows of steel, 

" As ye deal with my contemners, so with you My grace shall 

deal ; [' 

Let the hero bom of woman crush the serpent with his hee,l 
Since God is marching on. 

He has sounded forth the trumpet that shall never sound retreat. 
He is sifting out the hearts of men before His judgment seat; 
0, be swift, my soul, to answer Him, be jubilant, my feet! 
Our God is marching on. 

In the beauty of the lilies Christ was born across the sea, 
With a glory in His bosom that transfigures you and me; 
As He died to make men holy, let us die to make men free, 
While God is marching on. 

97 



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